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School Districts See Electric Buses For Sale

As the Tesla EV craze has reached massive popularity, hybrid vehicles are becoming more commonplace on city streets and General Motors plans to sell only electric cars, the need for school districts to transition their fleets to electric buses is growing. While adding EVs to a school bus fleet may seem risky due to upfront costs and required charging times, e-buses offer more stable and predictable operational costs with lower fuel consumption and zero tailpipe emissions.

As demand for electric buses grows, school districts are rushing to add them to their fleets. The advantages of EVs are clear: They are quieter, have lower operating costs than diesel or gasoline-powered buses and require less routine maintenance. Moreover, electric buses can run up to 135 miles on a charge, and with battery technology continuing to improve, they’re expected to become even more efficient in the future.

Several manufacturers have already made their mark in the electric bus industry, including European brands such as VDL and BYD, and Chinese companies Electric buses for sale like Yutong. However, recent changes to federal transit administration guidelines have made it more difficult for foreign-owned companies to qualify for funding. This may ultimately affect the growth of companies such as BYD America, a company that has been able to capitalize on government incentives, including FTA grants for EV purchases, to boost sales in the United States.

While many of the major players in the e-bus market have similar capabilities, each has their own unique features that make them stand out from the competition. For example, Volkswagen’s ID Buzz has a sleek exterior that looks futuristic, while its seats are clad in sustainable cloth and natural-looking materials that give the impression of being biodegradable. Meanwhile, Proterra offers a variety of custom electric bus solutions that include a range of sizes and floorplans.

In addition to customization options, some of the top manufacturers have also focused on developing and improving charging options. One of the most significant challenges to EV adoption is having the right infrastructure in place, especially in rural areas where the nearest station could be miles away. Companies such as Irizar are addressing this issue by designing and building charging stations in-house at their plants.

The need to upgrade the electric power grid in order to support these new buses is another obstacle that needs to be overcome. This process can take years and will vary from state to state. School districts should consider their operational layout and electrical capacity when determining where to install charging stations for their e-buses. Schools should also consider managed versus unmanaged charging options, as the latter can lead to higher long-term costs if the bus is charged during peak hours.